STARRED REVIEW
June 11, 2019

Fix Her Up

By Tessa Bailey

Travis Ford has been Port Jefferson’s pride and joy ever since he was a high school MVP knocking grand slams out of the park. The fame and success that followed (topped with a certain scandal-sheet notoriety: photos from an interrupted interlude earned him the nickname Two Bats) surprised no one, least of all Georgie Castle, his best friend’s little sister who always idolized him from afar.

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Travis Ford has been Port Jefferson’s pride and joy ever since he was a high school MVP knocking grand slams out of the park. The fame and success that followed (topped with a certain scandal-sheet notoriety: photos from an interrupted interlude earned him the nickname Two Bats) surprised no one, least of all Georgie Castle, his best friend’s little sister who always idolized him from afar. But when Travis returns to town, directionless and depressed after an injury and multiple surgeries have drained his career and his sense of self-worth, Georgie catches his eye in a way she never had before—by chucking greasy leftovers at his head and dragging him, kicking and screaming, back to life.

With the small-town vibe, the local-boy-makes-good-hero story, the second-chance romance and the best-friend’s-sister trope all coming together, you may think you know where Fix Her Up is going, especially when Travis and Georgie concoct a plan to fake a relationship to boost their reputations. If you’re certain it’ll inevitably lead to hijinks, misunderstandings, personal resolutions not to get attached and irresistible attraction that makes the fake romance real in spite of everything . . . well, you’re right. So what? You know where a rollercoaster is going before you get on. That doesn’t stop it from being an amazingly fun ride. And this story has more than enough heat and excitement and sweetness and charm to keep you glued to the page.

Travis really will make your heart (and other places) throb with his physical confidence, his full-throttle sensuality and the delicious way he gets caught up in the heroine despite his attempts to keep his distance. And girl-next-door heroine Georgie is definitely sweet. She works as a clown at kids’ birthday parties, and her easy propensity for joy is as natural and infectious as any child’s. And yet she is also fully grown up in her tastes and desires and deeply insightful in the way she angers, teases, soothes and motivates Travis into discovering the man underneath the playboy façade. My favorite part of Fix Her Up is how good they are for each other—and how much richer their lives are from having the other’s support on the way to seizing their dreams.

With a couple this fresh, engaging and endearing, a happy ending seems like an inescapable conclusion. But in the hands of Tessa Bailey, it feels more like a justly earned reward for everything Travis and Georgie have done to make us fall in love with them along the way. I already can’t wait to see them making cameos in the author’s upcoming sequel, Love Her or Lose Her.

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Fix Her Up

Fix Her Up

By Tessa Bailey
Avon
ISBN 9780062872838

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